Zaha Hadid Biography, Life, Interesting Facts


Zaha Hadid

Birthday :

October 31, 1950

Died On :

March 31, 2016

Birth Place :

Baghdad, Iraq

Zodiac Sign :


Chinese Zodiac :


Birth Element :


Zaha Mohammad Hadid came from a prominent family in Iraq. She was born on October 31, 1950, in Baghdad, Iraq. Zaha Hadid's father, Muhammad al-Haji Husayn Hadid was a successful entrepreneur and the co-founder of the National Democratic Party in Iraq. Her mother, Wajiha al-Sabunji was an artist. Her extremely successful father raised Zaha Hadid. This laid a solid foundation for her future success in life. Even from a young age, Hadid knew that someday she was going to turn out as a professional. Zaha Hadid studied at a progressive Catholic School on her earlier schooling. It was a school that comprised of French, Muslim and Jewish students.Zaha has a Sunni Muslim Arab family background. 

Zaha Hadid started at the ‘American University’ in Beirut for her secondary educational career. She took mathematics as her major subject. Zaha moved to London to study at the ‘Architectural Association’ in 1972. It is apparent that architecture was her strengths. While in London, Zaha met some professors and students that steered her to become a partner at the ‘Office for the Metropolitan Architecture.’ This opened her architectural career forward. 

From a young age, Hadid knew that there are no obstacles for her to pursue a professional career.Zaha was a determined and intelligent student. She studied mathematics at the American University of Beirut. Zaha went on to continue her chosen career in London. There Zaha joined the ‘Architectural Association School of Architecture.’ She ultimately became a British citizen. The Architecture practice she opened became a flourishing enterprise and brought her fame.

Early Acclaim 

In 1977, Zaha Hadid became a member of the ‘Office of Metropolitan Architecture,’ and this was a launching pad for her great career. At that time, Zaha also taught at the ‘Architectural Association.’ In 1980, Hadid started her practice in London. The company had 350 employees as at 2016. The ‘Vitra Fire Station’ in Wel am Rhein Germany was her first lucratively built project. It took four years from 1989 to 1993 for the building to be constructed. The building has since been converted into a museum. Zaha Hadid's extraordinary design was selected in Wales for the ‘Cardiff Bay Opera House’ in 1994. This provided her some exposure and led her to be famous. Regrettably, the city decided to build a stadium instead of the Opera House. 


Her Major Success 

In 1988, Zaha Hadid's design was selected for the ‘Rosenthal Center for Contemporary Art.’ It was Zaha's first American project and one of her most important work. It also received two awards, first in 2004 the ‘Royal Institute of British Architects Award.’ In the following year, she received another award, the ‘American Architecture Award from the ‘Chicago Athenaeum.’

In the 1990s, Zaha Hadid held the Sullivan Chair professorship at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s School of Architecture. She was also a guest professor at various institutions including the Hochschule fur bildende Kunste Hamburg (HFBK Hamburg), the Knowlton School of Architecture at Ohio State University, and the Masters Studio at Columbia University. Zaha Hadid's design was selected in 2005 for the ‘Olympic Aquatic Center’ for the 2012 Olympic Games. Presently, her designs are being used to build the ‘Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.’ 


Common Attribution

Zaha Hadid was an Iraqi – British architect. She was the first Arab woman to receive the notable Pritzker Architecture Prize. She is famous for her vastly animated designs. Her work of art was perceptively elegant in forms of multiple perspective points.Zaha was regarded as the pioneer in contemporary modern and innovative architecture styles. Hadid is well known for her new and state-of-the-art designs. She was the brain behind the designs of the aquatic center for the London 2012 Olympics games. The Broad Art Museum in the U.S. is among her best works. 
She was born in Baghdad and received a lavish lifestyle. Hadid was from a wealthy and successful family. She went to boarding schools in England and Switzerland. Zaha had a brilliant teaching career before she became famous as an architect. She taught in some institutions. Educational institutions like ‘Harvard Graduate School of Design’ and the ‘University of Illinois’ at ‘Chicago’s School of Architecture.’ 

She demonstrated herself as a distinguished architect in a few years. This was exhibited by her ground-breaking designs and original styles Hadid then received international recognition for her works. Besides her architectural career, Zaha Hadid also has a successful teaching career and got some high profile interior work. 


Other Notable Mentions

Zaha Hadid had numerous records of achievements. There were over one hundred remarkable awards and honors. In 1982 she received her first award for her British Architecture, ‘The Gold Medal Architectural Design.’ Hadid was one of the youngest recipients of the ‘ Pritzker Prize’ for architecture. She gracefully became the first woman who received such award in 2004. It is the highest honor in the field of design worldwide. 

Zaha Hadid has bestowed the honor of ‘Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 2004. The Heydar Aliyev Cultural Centre was one her designs. It was the winner in 2012 of the Design Museum, ‘Design of the Year Award.’ 


Family And Legacy 

Zaha Hadid's whole life was devoted entirely to her professional career. She never married nor had any children. As a Muslim woman, she was untangled from many social stereotypes. She appeared as a role model for Muslim women. She also opened up possibilities for women as well as Muslims to become architects. On March 31, 2016; Zaha Hadid died of a heart attack in a Miami hospital. She was on treatment for bronchitis at the time of her death. 

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